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Orient Fest in Bologna: a full immersion in the asian culture

Hi Kiwis!

A little hint for understand the topic of this post? “Orient” is the word.
This time i will show you many lands far miles away from Europe, staying in front of your computer; after some intensive weeks where i had thousand things to do and fix, i finally find the time for write this post and tell you of some great moments we spended there.

Yes dear traveller friends, i am talking of the Orient Fest; a really huge festival about all what concern the oriental culture, people and countries. Many of these fests are celebrate in Italy, and as sadly i couldn’t go in the one they did in Padova, so i just profited of the presence of my boyfriend for go together with him some months after in the Bologna Orient Fest.
Unuseless to say that was amazing, great, wonderful, awesome, magnific, fantastic and what else good you could use for describe it, for who like the oriental culture this is an occasion for have a small piece of paradies a couple thousand kilometers more near.

Are you ready? Come and discover with me this colorful oriental world!

Maybe all my amazement is just because was the first time i goes to a Orient Festival; i am not a person that go often in such big evenements and so for me was all pretty new, i just can talk for which are my ideas and my (little) experience.

First of all i was really astonished and was also unexpected that was not hyper full of people, i had expected me to can’t walk and see anything as was a cold rainy day and in Italy in such weekends they go in close areas where they can have fun and enjoy their time, but with big joy was not at all as i thought!
Once enter the first thing you could see was a big expensive collection of kimonos, totally decorate and colorful – i guess was hand decorated- and also some hand painted umbrellas in thypical orient style, a real stunning painting on fabric to admire for hours.

Something that made me a little bit confuse was that as the orient fest was divide in three halles, normally had to be all divided by country but in facts was all mixed together, and this hadn’t permit me to see and find the Saree i wished to buy and many other things that if better divided. So at the end it was chinese umbrellas mixed with thailandeses girls that did massage trials for free and moroccan that solded hot tea… not really the way how i like to do “shopping” and understand a culture or learn more about it.

One of the things that i really loved was walk over all these markets with a hot moroccan mint tea through my hands, a tea/infusion done with real fresh peppermint leaves, you could taste the intensive refreshing but at the same time warming flavour that this drink had and that just bringed you directly in another world.

In two of the three halles it was everytime breathtaking spectacles, exibitions and dances from different orient country and cultures. It spaced from martial arts to the belly dance and from belly dance to bhangra and bollywood choreographies, so is clear that mostly part of the time we spended it sit in front of the stage looking these wonderful great oriental shows. I can just say that such things are for sure to see as less once in the life, it merit really a lot and see that in tv or read it in books and then see it in real life make you feel really big emotions that you can’t hide.

Here the Orient Fest photos:

She is one of the most famous italian belly dancer, with her transparent amaranth scarf flowing in the air was impossible don’t get attract and stay to look. The colours and her really good performance had undoubtedly rouse a big warming applause that was more than merited.

Unfortunately i wasn’t in a good position for shoot well photos, so many i had to erase due of low quality or out of focus problem; anyway this is the Bhangra music and dance, a thypical indian popular dance from the Punjab region. Such colours, such a live and original sound had directly start to move inside my heart the desire to go up and dance with them (i guess i haven’t done it just because i don’t wanted my boyfriend get ashamed! ), this exibition had bring me directly to India in one second, i could close my eyes and see me there with my Saree drinking chai tee and cooking great food for all the family. I bet that if anyone gaved me a ticket for India and ask me to fly directly i would did it for sure without think about!!!

Another breathtaking spectacle directly from the orient world, was the Chang Liu Hu, in european words is a special way for serve tea using a teapot with a long beak; this tea serving is used in the Sichuan, a chinese region.
At the first impression due of his fast movements and cause we was a little bit far from the stage i thought that the teapot was empty, but with big amazement i have discover just once the photos were on my computer that the teapot was totally full of water, reason why i was even more impressed that the floor of the stage was totally dry without even a drop of “tea” on it.

I can’t hide all the disappointment i had felt when these mongolian band had start to exibit their melodies and all the people laughed for the voice they had, sincerely when you go to an orient fest you can’t expect normal singers and songs as the european one, you can’t expect to find asians with a european style, you are there for see and live for one day the oriental culture, so the people should also understand that this isn’t fun for them, is their traditional way to play and sing and must be respected and understanded, all that was just shameful. Anyway they are the Khukh Mongol, a band that sing, play and dance on traditional songs from Mongolia, their spectacle was really good, they had really transfer in few seconds the atmosphere of a far away land like Mongolia.

Then was come the time of Acroyoga exibition, a yoga session mixed with stunts, this art need a big concentration and meditation but also an enormous training in all the muscles of your body. With what they did had let everyone with open mouth totally astonished, the men were just incredibly strong and extremely careful to the women that they lifted up all the time. Personally i had like a lot this art because is something based on faith on each other, empathy and collaboration; i am sure that this help a lot to have a good match and better understanding in the couple.

One of the moments i loved mostly, it have been look the mandala “building” with colored powders; this isn’t a simple and normal one, is done by 6 buddhist monks of the Samten Choeling monastery, a mandala create with a lot of dedition and time, representing the tridimensional shape of a holy palace. They needed around 2 days for complete it, for our luck we have reach it when was already to a good point for permit us to shoot a photo of this amazing masterpiece they did.

I had heard many times about this traditional dance but i never had the possibility to see it live how wonderful is. This is the Tannura Dance made from dervish people (Egypt), take its name from the dress used for it and that’s divide in two fundamental parts: the ritual side and the musical side thypical from the Nile river areas. This turning man with his colorful and decorate dress was so attracting, and was even more stunning how he turned so fast without fall or get “drunk”, a spectacle that i am really happy to have see once in my life!

Ok, i can’t hide it, this is the show i have love mostly because it represent more what i am inside in my soul and all my emotions were reflected in my sparkling eyes looking it.
Yes dear Kiwis, i am talking of the Bollywood choreographies of the “Bollymasala Dance Company” founded by Ambili Abraham, one of the main dancer of the bollywood world. With their shining and sparling clothes they were super eyecatching, but what is unforgettable for me is at which crazy speedness they moved their bodies at rythm of music and all at the same time. Clearly we are talking of a professional dancing company composed by high level dancers, but i never expected such a great show and therefore i had not known was a real bollywood dance company.
My opinion? Simply amazing!!!

Something i really estremely love (apart tea yes!) are spices, any food without spices is for me without taste and sense. Spices should be in every food we eat because are healthy and help to get every taste more intensive. When i saw this little market with more than 50 different bags full of spices and then got this lovely smell of it under my nose, i just goes crazy and wish to buy all which never tried before, like the macis or the nigella. At the end i was so much unsure of what i wanted that i took nothing for don’t regret to have take one thing but not the other one! – what an idiot –

I can’t say the same for the Tea market; is impossible, there are no possibilities that i come home without tea if i stand in front of so much god’s drinking. For people that like me are tea addicted and can understand me, can also imagine the feeling and confusion to stand in front of more then 40 varieties of tea and can’t choose because all would be good and worthy to be tried. I couldn’t anyway really come home and then regret to have buy nothing as i did with spices… so in my indecision i had let the choice to my boyfriend and we bought this amazing rooibos orange grapefruit mint tea; probably it don’t exist words for describe exactly the exotic overwhelming flavour and smell that it have. If you can find it anywhere and you would like to try it, i really advise you!
Anyway if you are curious to know more about: the regret once home have start to grow in me, cause once bought that i had saw a green sencha cranberry rose tea and i still bite my fingers for have let it there!

These was all the photos i did at the Orient Fest of Bologna, but here a last sketch of it; a video of all theses great spectacles!

It have been a day full of wonderful moments and things, where we got the occasion to enter in the oriental culture and understand and learn more about it, i have got the occasion to met some people i hadn’t see since longtime and live the atmosphere of a world that in europe we just can dream about. Enter and try to understand another culture and try with your body and mind to live like them, it permit you to be and become a more an Open Minded Person. There is nothing more of what be proud than be a tolerant open minded person with people that aren’t like us, that don’t think it like us and don’t live like us. This is something that in 2016 is essential for build a peaceful world and society, such fests are an occasion for remember to everyone that we are not all the same, we must respect each other and help us in any possible way, without etnies, culture, religion or politic dinstinctions.
On these words i invite you to think about and imagine how the society could be different if we lived in a tolerant world. I also would like to know what you think about the oriental culture and if you have never been in orient, i would be happy to talk with you about and know your ideas!

I profite for this last post of March for wish you all a happy Easter and happy April beginning!!!

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Orient Fest in Bologna: a full immersion in the asian culture


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